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How to be nice to a Johnner
01/06/2006 15:53

Please don't refer to us as "St John's Ambulance". We are "St John Ambulance" - named after him, now owned by him. [Oh, and it's St John the Baptist, if you were wondering]

Organisers: please be accurate in your expected timings. And try to keep to the programme. We have our own lives as well you know (OK maybe we don't). We don't particularly want to turn up an hour early because we were told the wrong time, or have to hang around at the end because your event is over-running.

Another one for the Organisers: If you change your address, phone number, email, name, etc. after first contacting us - let us know. We can't contact you if we don't know where you are. (yes, it has happened)

A bit of shelter would be appreciated too.

Remember that we are human. We do need to eat and drink, preferably on food and beverages provided by the event organisers. We don't get paid. Of course, even if you are not the event organiser, you can still offer tea, cake, biscuits, etc. when you pass by the first aid post. It's unlikely to be refused.

Don't ask us where the toilet is. It only annoys us. Especially when there is a big sign pointing to the toilets right outside the first aid post

Don't run towards the first aid post (unless, of course you really do need some first aid). It only gets us excited as we think there is something to do, then disappointed when the runner goes straight past. The same goes for waving in our general direction.

If you need first aid help, come to the first aid post yourself (or ask us to come to you). Don't send a friend to ask for an ice pack / bandage / plaster / paracetamol. We only treat the casualty directly, not through a third-party.

Try not to get to exasperated when we ask you a hundred and one seemingly irrelevant questions. It's not our fault , it's the silly forms we have to fill in. And sometimes we don't know whether a question is irrelevant until you've given us all the answers.

Speaking of the forms, say "yes" when we ask you if you would like a copy. It will really make our day. Someone put a lot of time and money into designing these duplicating forms so we can give you a copy - and hardly any of you ever want one

If we advise you that you shouldn't take part in the event for the rest of the day, guess what? We mean that you shouldn't take part in the event for the rest of the day. We don't give this advice for fun - we believe that there is a serious risk of your exacerbating the injury.

We are there to provide first aid services. It's quite likely we have very little interest in the event itself - certainly not enough to otherwise stay there all day.

The "Can you give me the kiss of life / a groin massage / stitches to hold my flies together" jokes have been going on so long they are no longer funny, and you are not the first person to make them. Actually, I don't think they were ever funny.

No, we do not have any wasp-eze or sun cream. We don't have asthma inhalers either, so remember to bring your own.

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